Feel free to laugh...someone should.
Distractions come in many forms. One of the biggest rabbit holes is, of course, social media. Social media is a full time job. Literally. People hire social media mavens to engage the audience with wit and witticisms...building "followers," getting "likes," and eliciting responses of almost any kind.
Not because it's the coolest job in the world. Because, frankly, social media can be a waste of one's precious time, energy and talents. Those fully engaged in real life usually hire someone else to manage their accounts. It should only be those with part-time jobs, people who are unemployed, between jobs, self-employed, retired, and teenagers that can "afford" to spend their days tapping out infinite characters on touchscreens for the benefit of strangers. And, none of the folks who can be on places like Twitter all day long can move you (or your life) forward. Which means, they'll only be holding you back.
Let me tell you a little story:
I could easily spend 3-5 hours/day on social media while also multi-tasking--including doing analytics, fixing spelling errors on my websites, answering emails, making calls, opening mail, paying bills, making dinner...the phone even came with me in the bathroom! It was kinda horrible.
How did all this happen?
I'd accepted that getting my brand's message out there took THAT MUCH time. Just part of living in the 21st century, right???
Wrong. So very, very wrong.
Thanks to the super-blood-wolf-moon, or, the likely culprit, #DryJanuary, I had LOTS of ornery social media "friends" this month--people I've absolutely never met and probably never will, but have talked to nearly every day for YEARS.
Well, the last week or so, things have gotten really quiet. Part of why is because I started an honesty trend. Any "friend" or "follower" seeking sycophantic approval naturally fell away--a great thing. As the users, takers, losers, and abusers left my social circle, I gained both time and perspective. The other reason my phone stopped blowing up at all hours of the day was my decision to spread that honesty to the seemingly ever-present half dozen or so dudes circling me on social media, the intensity of which particularly amps up between 2 January and 13 February (the post-holidays, pre-V-day crowd looking for someone to hump-n-dump before Valentine's Day plans or invitations to join family dinners at Easter can be penciled in). Essentially, I'd had enough with men always thinking it was their right to take up my time, but give me ABSOLUTELY NOTHING in return outside of *a little* attention. Very little.
Straight men never seem to get that consistency goes a looong way with intelligent (aka worthy) women. We need to see that you're serious about us. Nothing wrong with a decent dick pic (especially if you're between 25-32, hawt and packing serious heat, lol...) but your hawtness aside, women both want and need people with substance. Quality over quantity! I'd trade 100 hawt, fun, unpredictable (and well hung) bad boys for one stable, solid, educated, employed man with no messy exes, no police record, a decent credit score, a grown-up car, and lives anywhere that isn't his parents' basement (or, his ex's bed...pink-floral comforter and all!). For the record, kids (and dogs!) are always a plus....
Ladies, if you are educated, employed, take care of yourself physically and emotionally, maybe own your own home and drive a decent car--look for someone who matches you. If you have to wait for that guy, wait. I lived in the projects the first ten years of my life. I was homeless at one point. I had a child when I was a child. I was a single mother and a teen mom before MTV made it popular. No one helped me pay for my education or my life. If I can get through all that, and be as accomplished as I am today, the only people allowed in my life are people who appreciate not only who I am, but what I had to do to get here. Leveling down is not an option. You need hawt sex AND someone who will let you be yourself, while continuing to meet and/or exceed your goals. Choosing anyone else is just a way for you to build in a lifetime of self-sabotage.
Smart people choose partners who add positives, not negatives. So, be smart. Focus on what (and who) makes you truly happy and you'll always make the right choice. Get distracted and you'll lose six months to a year of your very valuable time...or more. That's six months to a year you could have been spending with Mr. or Ms. Right, but it can only happen if you stay on course.
Men who contact me on social media (or by other means of e-communication, like WhatsApp) NEVER think to ask me if I'm actually available. NEVER. That's just plain stupid. I mean, have you seen me??? Is there any man alive who imagines that a woman with my assets is lonely? Or, alone???
As I considered all of the above distractions, I was forced to ask myself these questions (and, you should, too):
How does allowing social media to take up my time help my brand/business? How does it help me move my financial goals forward???
It really doesn't. The majority of people who pull at my time online are male. When I say "majority," I mean 99% of the people who engage with me are men. Not all are looking to hit it. There are really great people who deserve my time and are completely respectful and, yes, also male. And then, there are the asshats who send me hyper-sexualized pics of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, or, Wonder Woman and Poison Ivy having a threesome with Harley Quinn.
Men who sexualize women never see women as anything but objects. Ladies, you can prove me right by simply voicing your opinion to any man who is currently wasting your time (under the guise of some level of romantic interest, or, my favorite, the "helping" relationship that is actually just another codependency). Heaven forbid you ever disagree with a man who perpetually sees you bent over and naked, spreading your ass cheeks while looking back at him and biting your lower lip. Those guys will 100% STOP talking to you the moment you tell them they are wrong, or call them on their sexism, or, have the gall to voice a different opinion.
To all the negative peeps that can't seem to get out of their own way, here's some friendly advice:
The silent-treatment doesn't hurt anyone but the person giving it. The only "lesson" being "taught" to the person you've shut out is that their life is less burdensome without you in it. Your negativity is the real "reason" you disconnected from someone who was too polite and too kind to do it themselves. Your revenge fantasy of holding a strong, accomplished, smart person emotional hostage is egotistical to an extreme. To be completely blunt, you don't matter as much as you think you do.
If an individual goes dark, REJOICE! One less person to take up your valuable time. That's my attitude, and so far, it's working...which means, I can, too!
By the way, book editors of my experience and education level make upwards of $85/hour. Consultants with my expertise make $100/hour. Let's not even get into developing web content...$125+/hour. That means that every hour I spend on social media--even if I'm working while doing it--is actually taking away HUNDREDS of dollars per day, adding up to THOUSANDS of dollars each week.
I freaked out when I realized the actual dollar-value I was losing--not that I'd be working all those billable hours, but I could be finding more jobs to bill instead of helping this person with their love life, or listening to that person complain about basically nothing. Don't get me wrong! I have great friends on social media who I value, and, who value me and my time. Worthy, productive people who understand having a quality conversation once or twice a month is more meaningful than expecting anyone to write detailed paragraphs every damn day.
People that value your time, and are respectful of you and your opinions, are the same folks who will defend you when you aren't around. Unprompted public promotion of you and your work is the sign of a true friend. Such individuals deserve your time. But, no more than an hour a day if it's through social media. I'm not kidding. If you need more than an hour, hire an assistant. If you can't afford an assistant, then you shouldn't be on social media that much anyway--you should be using that time to look for ways to increase your earning power!
Priorotize! This is not a dress rehearsal. It's your life. And, you're letting it pass you by...for what??? To talk to losers, users, abusers, takers, and narcissistic-fucks who have impossibly high expectations of you (but not of themselves!), and will prove it the moment you don't do exactly what they want--usually by discarding you? You’ve worked too hard to be who you are to allow anyone to devalue you in any way, including questioning your well-earned integrity. No more double-checks on WhatsApp??? Time to celebrate! You just got richer, healthier, hawter, and more productive.
Now that we've taken out the trash, let's talk about Netflix, shall we???
I recently binged, "Sex Education." Great series. Adore it! Along with "Derry Girls" and yes, the depressingly funny, "Flowers," but that's 6-8 hours of time PER BINGE! I bike my butt off while I watch...sometimes. And, I use weights and do dead lifts and squats...once in a while. But it's not the same as going to the gym, is it?
The answer is a resounding, "No!"
The gym isn't something anyone can (or should) skip. Working out in your house is great, but you work HARDER when you're at the gym. Working harder means working smarter when we're talking about the body. Because, biking for 30 minutes at home while watching TV is no where near as effective as a 30-minute spin class.
But Netflix isn't the only culprit. It's Netflix AND Hulu AND Prime AND Cable. And, social media. Add all that up and you are losing an average of 3-10 hours each and every day. Those hours could be spent getting healthier, hawter, richer, and more productive. We all lose momentum after the newness of the new year wears off. But loss of momentum is not the same as outright self-sabotage. If you feel lonely, you grab your phone and check Facebook for a few minutes--that's fine. It's when you're writing whole paragraphs in your comments (something I TOTALLY do...eek) that you are self-sabotaging.
To better ID the time-sucks in your life, start by being honest with yourself and others. After a week of honest engagement, see who still wants your time. The people who stick around are worth part of your one-hour per day--the people who don't are users and takers. Whatever you believed they "gave" you in exchange for your time wasn't worth it. It's the same with love-relationships, family and friendships, too. Anyone who gets angry easily, regularly starts fights, is inconsistent, hurts your reputation, or holds you emotional hostage, is pretty much a time-suck. Nothing worthwhile will ever come out of it. You're only hurting yourself waiting for people who are clearly unstable to suddenly see the light. Even if high-functioning, the people who abruptly disconnect from you are sick. Be grateful they're gone. And, don't let them back in! In trying to cause you pain, they're actually helping you to avoid it. Smart ones will eventually realize this and attempt to weasel their way back in...so be thankful for the ones who are stupid.
Here are some tasty tidbits to chew on--like a piece of your favorite gum--except, instead of spitting it out, I want you to swallow:
Whether guy or girl, if a person really likes you (and isn't 12), they let you know it. If that person has let you know, yet still finds excuses to blow you off instead of finding reasons to spend time with you--they have a boyfriend or girlfriend, partner or spouse. Always the case, even if the individual repeats the words, "I'm single," like it's a broken record. It's not the record that's broken...it's the person.
If you've been texting with a "friend" for years and suddenly, that "friend" claims to be into you--it's a lie. That person is just lonely and/or unhappy. Probably a little of both. You just happen to be the most convenient outlet. Maybe you make yourself accessible because you have feelings for that individual and they know it, essentially taking advantage of you. Regardless, it's not a healthy situation. Casper it up! Ghosting was created for moments just like this....
If a man or woman starts a conversation with, "I disappoint everyone who cares for me," or says things like, "I hate being me," RUN, don't walk. Playing the victim is completely manipulative--a cheap way of asking permission to eventually abuse you, hate you, resent you, and hurt your life...IF you let them. Connection or not, any person who self-sabotages through things like addiction will NEVER treat you with the respect you deserve because that individual doesn't treat themselves with respect. Good signs to look out for include needing constant approval and acknowledgement from others and deep insecurity that manifests as possessive and controlling behavior, often masked as being "protective."
ALL of the above are just EXCUSES to lose #FOCUS...and time, energy, money, etc.. You are absolutely NOT ALLOWED to self-sabotage in 2019!
Financial independence is the ONLY WAY you will be free to live your best life.
Why accept an adequate life when you can live an extraordinary one???
Honesty will help you lose A LOT of the dead weight you've been unwittingly carrying around. Prioritizing yourself by working out and eating well means less time for drinking, going out, and generally doing unhealthy things for your body, your mind, and, your wallet. Limiting your social media to an hour a day will help you to reclaim time and money. Do it for the next four weeks. See what happens.
2019 is the YEAR of CAREER!